[Advaita-l] Kanchi Maha-Swamigal's Discourses on Advaita Saadhanaa (KDAS-53)

V. Krishnamurthy profvk at yahoo.com
Mon Aug 21 08:47:10 CDT 2006


For a Table of Contents of these Discourses, see
For the previous post, see

[Note 1. Thank you, Shri Subbu, for explaining that
sentence: “If that sprouting is not followed in reality,
even in that refined state, all that sAdhanA will be
swallowed by a burst of ego”, in KDAS #51


[Note 2: This is for those who have newly started reading
this series from KDAS#52. It is to be noted that the
mahaswamigal, upto KDAS #49, covered the four components of
Sadhana-chatushhTayaM (sAdhanA-set of four): Viveka
(Discrimination), VairAgya (Dispassion), Shama-damAdi
shhaTkaM (the sextad of shama, dama, etc) and MumukShutA
(longing for mokSha).  The seeker, who started with
karma-anushhTAna that resulted in a reasonable purification
of the mind and bhakti which resulted in a potential for
one-pointedness of the mind, and then  has practised the
Sadhana-chatushhTayaM for as long as his guru requires   is
now ready for SannyAsa and for the further components:
ShravaNa, Manana and NidhidhyAsana. It is at this point the
Swamigal starts the subject of  Bhakti, because he says  ‘
a higher-grade Bhakti’ is now necessary for laying one’s
ego in surrender to the Atman. This background is necessary
to follow the discourses from KDAS #50 onwards. ..VK]

Tamil original:  http://www.kamakoti.org/tamil/dk6-112.htm

It is this false ‘I’ that has to become the real ‘I’. One
has to give it some prop of something which can help it
unify with Brahman from which it has separated and now has
to be turned away from the multifarious objects of this
dualistic unverse. It is necessary to make the Inner Organ
go back to the Atman-locale in the heart. Here the Inner
Organ is short for the mind, the intellect and Ego. The Ego
is the false ‘I’ which has fattened itself by its
appropriation of things and objects from the pluralistic
variety of the universe.The mind and the intellect function
at the basic prompting of the Ego.  When somebody has
fattened himself well, how can he go through a small gate? 
When a fat person arrives at our house sometimes we make
fun of him by saying that our entrance has to be demolished
and rfedone to admit him. But ‘this gate (of the heart)
cannot be broken or hammered to become small! We have only
to make the whole person (Ego)  leaner! How to make him

How did he (the Ego) become fat?  Seeing everything  as
distinct from everything else, he has been accumulating and
accumulating  from this plurality and fattened himself. All
that outer coating has to be melted/dissolved away now. Not
only that. Afterwards that ego which is making him think of
himself as a separate Jiva has to be melted away. Only if
it is  reduced  thus, it can hope to enter that small
needle point through the heart and reach that  advaitic
bliss of  the Atman  within. How can that be done? – is the
question. Answer: Only by practice of ‘Love’!

The egoistic false ‘I’has been grabbing left and right all
along. That has to be changed to a process of giving
oneself in love – that is the only way to reduce the fat
‘I’  to a leaner ‘I’.  That, and nothing else,  is the
route to go to the locale of the Atman.

 One may ask: Did not one reduce the fatness of the Ego  by
dispassion, shama and dama? What was reduced was only  the
fat in the mind and the intellect.  It is true that they
were cleaned, sharpened, churned and reduced.  But the Ego
is more subtle than these. It is the one which drags us
into the mire of duality, without our even knowing that it
is so dragging us! We may not be outwardly bragging with
pride: “I have got dispassion; shama and dama, etc. have
been achieved by me”. But inwardly without our being
conscious of it, this individualised ego which has
separated itself from the ParamAtmA, will be patting itself
on its achievements.  Actually the gains in Atma-sAdhanA,
that have  so far been obtained, along with the
individuality,  should be melted away in the Atman. Instead
of that, the ego appropriates all the honours to itself. 
And it thus fattens itself! It is the feeling of
individuality that is at the head of all these and that is
what prevents it  even of thinking to reduce and merge into
the locale of the Atman. In other words, the most important
thing needed for Brahman-Realisation, namely surrender of
the ego, never takes place.

The function of Love – the noblest attitude of giving
oneself up --  is exactly this: it prevents the ego
fattening itself on the great achievements and helps it to
thin out. Fortunately, the acquiring of discrimination,
dispassion, shama, dama, etc.have refined the
antaH-karaNaM. So if only one  makes the determination,one
can generate the necessary Love. And one can go on to
surrender the ego and the individuality and thus exhibit
this Love.

Tamil Original: http://www.kamakoti.org/tamil/dk6-113.htm

But to whom do we exhibit this Love? What is the object of
this Love?  To whom does one give himself up? If it is to
other people, other places, the nation, or the world –
these things are out of place at this stage. For, such an
action will germinate an attachment and a consequent
danger! One need not forget the story of JaDa-Bharata.  In
earlier stages, service to others, to the nation and to the
world are all good self-effacing acts that will result in
the cleaning up of the mind and so turn out to be very
good.  That belongs to Karma Yoga. But now one is going on
the JnAna path towards the discarding of everything that is
mAyA and, love or service towards the to-be-discarded mAyA
world is inconceivable. Of course a JnAni (who has attained
Brahman realisation) by the prompting of the Almighty of
the mAyic world does worldly service. Our Acharya himself
was one such. But that was, after the stage of influence by
mAyA – in other words, one has established himself as 
‘mAyA-proof’!  That JnAni is not doing things on his own
volition; he does them as an instrument of Ishvara. Thus
love can be expressed or exhibited  either before one
begins any such thing as advaita-sAdhanA or,  after one has
attained Realisation, in the form of service to the world
or to individuals – but not at the present stage of
advaita-sAdhanA that we are discussing. One in a million
who has engaged in this sAdhanA not doing worldly service
is also not a big loss to the world. In fact it is the
other way. It is we who have to do service to him with the
thought: “We have got ourselves into the mire of samsAra.
At least some rare person is struggling to get the Release.
Let us do whatever we can to smoothen his journey of life”.

Thus neither to individuals nor to the society does this
sAdhaka have to show his love. That does not mean he has to
be inimical to society. There is neither love nor hate.
Non-violence is his first characteristic – by the very fact
that he has taken a promise at the time of taking SannyAsa,
that not a single being shall have any fear of me – in
other words, “ I shall not harm in any way any living
being”. So he cannot have any hate towards any being or
society.  This absence of hatred, however, which has come
as the effect of the strength of his sAdhanA, is not to be
shown as an explicit love in the outside world.

However, when Love is sprouting from inside, that nectar of
love has to be poured to some one to whom one should be
giving oneself up – then only one can hope to reduce the
ego and  enter the innermost small recess of the heart. Who
should be that some one, if not the Atman itself?! Atman
should be wooed – that is what we said when we were talking
about mumukShutA.  The wooing should become a surrender to
the Atman in a spirit of dedication of the self.  The Atman
should not only take over the individuality but actually
‘vanquish’ it to nothingness – that should be the attitude
of Love towards  the Atman!. Maybe before the Atman reveals
itself, one has to go through severe testing. The readiness
for such testing is to be shown by the attitude: “ Am I
keeping anything with me without being offered to you? 
Then why all these tests? I am ready to be consumed by
you”.  This is where Love turns into Bhakti!

Love placed in the noblest of objects is Bhakti. Love
placed on our equals is friendship. Love reposed in elders
whether they are noble or not, is respect.  Love placed in
younger ones, or those below us, is grace. Love placed in
those who suffer is compassion. Love placed in noble ones 
with humility is Bhakti. The noblest  object is God and so
if we humbly submit to Him with Love that is Bhakti. This
Bhakti then becomes Guru Bhakti, Matru Bhakti, PitR bhakti,
Bhakti towards our nation and so on. Among these, only God
and the Guru can  really take our Love as well as our
individual ‘I’ and melt it in the universal ‘I’.

The SadhakA on the jNaNA  path is  supposed to have his
God, not with attributes, but  as the nirguNa-Atman. So he
has to show his Love, Bhakti, only towards that Atman.

(To be Continued)
PraNAms to all students of advaita.
PraNAms to the Maha-Swamigal.

Prof. V. Krishnamurthy

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